Shaftesbury Town councillors have adopted a plan for the Town Council to achieve carbon-neutral status by 2030. But Cllr Alex Chase expects the council to reach that goal sooner.
The Town Council has committed to improving the energy efficiency of its own buildings, including the Town Hall and Oasis Pool, within 18 months. Councillors also hope to adapt the Bell Street car park public conveniences into composting toilets, although Alex says that has proved problematic.
As part of the strategy, the council wants to harness solar energy and feed surplus power into the grid. The strategy document states that the council will develop an energy hub ‘to provide energy for the whole town’. Alex accepts that commitment needs rewording, as he says it is not achievable.
Covered town centre cycle racks will be installed within six months to complement the launch of a town cycling circuit. And Alex says residents will be encouraged to rent out their driveways for private parking to address the demand for town centre parking.
Local food producers will be promoted to reduce food transport and the town council intends launching a community fridge project within two years. It will allow local people to share excess food.
Alex says the council will continue to work with groups such as Planet Shaftesbury and Plastic Free Shaftesbury in delivering the plan’s goals.